I kind of shrink when thinking about actually posting this because I really hate it when people get all sanctimonious about their life choices. If I go vegetarian this time, it will be because I really can't justify the consequences of eating meat. And I don't have to start quoting Michael Pollan or posting Humane Society feedlot videos. We all know what's going on. It's bad. It's inhumane. It's environmentally unsound. And yet, I'm still not altogether convinced that getting rid of meat is the answer.
Here are some things I've been thinking about along these lines:
1) From a logistical standpoint, the odds are pretty low that everyone in the world will become a vegetarian. This means that there will always be a population consuming meat. This means that, rather than trying to ban meat or preach veganism, it's probably more realistic and responsible to encourage more sustainable and responsible agriculture. However, if people like me who are interested in supporting sustainable and responsible agriculture convert to vegetarianism, we are no longer contributing to the meat market, per say. Which means that the meat market will continue to be dominated by the percentage of the population who doesn't care or can't currently afford to support sustainable practices. Which means that those who are in the meat industry won't be convinced that it is financially feasible for them to transition to more sustainable methods. So there's that concern. I don't think that my ONE meatless mouth is going to be the determinant factor in this, but it is definitely an issue.
2) I absolutely do NOT believe in vegetarian self-righteousness. I don't want to be labeled as an asshole. It seems like a paltry reason, but it's a big deal to me. Many of my social events in life center around friends and food and I'm not interested in bringing my political beliefs to the table in these circumstances. This means, at best, I'm still a flexitarian (which is pretty much what I am now). So what would be the point of making the transfer over if I know I'll still be in pretty much the same place?
3) I cook dinner probably two or three nights a week and the people I cook for (roommates, friends, etc) and eat with are not necessarily vegetarian. Since I pretty much hate cooking for myself, going vegetarian might mean that I end up doing more cooking for one. Unless I suddenly become the world's most awesome vegetarian chef. Which I'm not. I'm not a bad cook, but you're not going to be seeing my upcoming show on the Food Network any time soon.
So yeah. There are some thoughts that I'm having.